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Campbell doesn’t think he was benched

By Jerry McDonald - NFL Writer
Wednesday, December 1st, 2010 at 2:40 pm in Oakland Raiders.

News, notes, quotes and observations from the Raiders open locker room period Wednesday:

— Jason Campbell took exception to the perception that he had been sent to the bench for reasons of performance.

Campbell was removed at halftime of the Rams game in favor of Bruce Gradkowski, then against the Steelers. After coach Tom Cable had said Campbell was still the quarterback and there was “no issue,’’ he was found himself backing up Gradkowski against Miami.

Here’s how Campbell sees it:

“The hardest part was hearing people telling me I’ve been benched three times. That’s not true,’’ Campbell said. “The Pittsburgh game I was not benched. I was taken out for reasons of being hit a lot and different ghings.

“I expected to come back last weekend and start, but the situation came up where they felt like Bruce was healthy, and coach said he’s a man of his word and that’s what he’s going to stick by.

“I wasn’t benched not to play the Miami game, just because he was sticking by what he said.’’

Campbell is the starter for the time being and there’s no reason not to apply some selective reasoning. Nothing good comes from repeating his postgame concern that if Gradkowski was healthy enough to play against Pittsburgh, why didn’t he start that game?

Or from recalling that Cable said on Nov. 15 that Campbell had “earned the right to start’’ to the starting job after three straight wins and that he was staying with the hot hand.

Campbell doesn’t seem the type to play the victim anyway, and it makes even less sense when you have the job again. He surely realizes that had had he passed for 300 yards and the Raiders had beaten the Steelers, he would have started against Miami as well _ regardless of whatever “promises’’ were made to Gradkowski.

His job will not be an easy one, with the Raiders having lost two straight games in one-sided and uninspired fashion.

“Going to the bye week, having won three in a row and four out of five … sometimes, the bye week is a chance to get healthy and finish the run the rest of the season,’’ Campbell said. “Unfortunately, this time the bye week seemed like it bit us and we lost that chemistry and we lost the things that we were doing very well. Now, we’re trying to regroup and get back to that. ‘’

– The switching of quarterbacks has taken its toll on the passing game.

“Offense is all about chemistry and continuity, and getting a feel for each other and learning each other,’’ Campbell said. “Especially when you don’t have a lot of years together. You try to make the best of it until you can get to the point where you want to be. It’s all a work in progress. You can’t get down, can’t get frustrated.’’

Wide receiver Louis Murphy concedes it’s been an adjustment.

“Sometimes it’s a little rough, because there’s two different quarterbacks,’’ Murphy said. “They have different styles, we have different hook ups with them. You know, certain passes, each one throws differently.

“But we’ve played with both of them for a fair time and it’s really no excuse. We just gotta’ keep going out and making plays when it’s our number called.’’

— With the Chargers giving up 81 yards per game on the ground and the Raiders running game having gained just 77 yards on 30 carries the last two weeks, Oakland can choose to either mix things up and be more daring with the pass, or just run that much harder.

Left guard Robert Gallery is in favor of the latter approach.

“Execution,’’ was Gallery’s answer when asked about the issues with the running game. “I think we’ve only run it 22 times (on called running plays) the last two games and that’s not who we are. We’ve got to get back to running the football and executing when we’re doing it.’’

In the first game against San Diego, Michael Bush rushed for 104 yards on 26 carries and a touchdown with Darren McFadden sidelined because of a hamstring strain. He is only one of only three backs (Arians Foster and Stephen Jackson are the others) to gain 100 yards on the Chargers this year.

— San Diego quarterback Philip Rivers has drawn his share of criticism for being a little mouthy, but he’s got one fan in Raiders defensive tackle Tommy Kelly. Kelly said he met Rivers at a college all-star game and considers him this year’s NFL Most Valuable Player.

“Who’s playing better than Phil?,’’ Kelly said .“I mean Phil is doing his thing, to me he’s the MVP because everybody around him that got hurt, and he’s still carrying his team. To me, that’s a leader right there. He done put the team on his shoulders and came up big.’’

Kelly got a chuckle out of a question referring to how the Raiders “had pretty good success’’ against Rivers the first time this season.

“He threw for 400!,’’ Kelly said. “I mean, you gotta pressure Phil, me and Big Rich and Big John, we gotta push up in his face. “Phil likes to step up in the pocket and and get them intermediate routes to (Antonio) Gates, dump it to (Darren) Sproles out of the backfield. We’ve just got to make his day very uncomfortable.’’

— Chargers tight end Antonio Gates is battling a painful plantar fascia condition which has him at less than 100 percent, but he has no intention of shutting it down.

“My goal is to deal with what I can, try to contribute if I can and if I can’t, just try to be unselfish enough to know what’s my limitations.”

– Jacoby Ford was named the AFC Special Teams Player of the Month for November. He had a 94-yard touchdown on a kickoff return against Kansas City and a 101-yard return for a score against Miami, the latter the third longest in club history.

More to come after Cable’s post-practice press briefing . . .

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  • LA to TheBay

    He should.

  • PurpleDrank81

    U were benched man

  • Hot Shot

    Use guys like Nick Miller more.You have that guys speed and he can catch but how often do they give him the ball.DHB hes fast and how often do they throw a short pass to him to allow Yards after the catch.Fast guys dont need bombs throw short and let them do the work.

  • 100PercentRaider

    C’mon guys, do you really believe those are actually Campbell’s words? Just an attempt at damage control by the Raiders.

  • RaiderWill

    Hot Shot Says:
    December 1st, 2010 at 2:48 pm
    Use guys like Nick Miller more.You have that guys speed and he can catch but how often do they give him the ball.DHB hes fast and how often do they throw a short pass to him to allow Yards after the catch.Fast guys dont need bombs throw short and let them do the work.

    ————————————————

    Againt the dolphins they should have been running shorter routes so they can play to Gradkowski strength. Instead they run longer routes and have there best deep qb on the bench. What kind of game plan was that ?

  • PurpleDrank81

    Khalif Barnes has more TD’s then JLH……

  • http://no_knuckleheads! 909RaiderLifer

    This whole QB debacle never has passed the sniff test, still smells like BS to me…

  • RaiderRockstar

    Orton: 3370 yards, 20 TD’s, 6 INT’s, sacked 29 times, QB Rating = 96

    Rivers: 3362 yards, 23 TD’s, 9 INT’s, sacked 25 times, QB Rating = 104

    Cassel: 2307 yards, 22 TD’s, 4 INT’s, sacked 15 times, QB Rating = 99

    Camp/Grads: 2381 yards, 12 TD’s, 13 INT’s, sacked 33 times, QB Rating = 71

    ***

    Hue Jackson needs a promotion ???

  • RaiderRockstar

    Cable said prior to the season that this is a playoff team. Over the hump and all that jazz. So if the players aren’t motivated, hungry or prepared that falls back on the coaches. If the aren’t being used to the best of their abilities or being put in a position to succeed, that also falls back on the coaches.

    One could even argue that fundamental mistakes like fumbles, false starts, offsides, holding, PI’s, etc fall on the coaches too (but I usually don’t)

  • Hot Shot

    Raiders look for big plays down the field to much.Qbs we have are not that good to do that.Guys just throw short and move the chains and control the clock.Keep the D off the field and keep them fresh.Its simple even a caveman can do it.

  • RaiderWill

    RaiderRockstar Says:
    December 1st, 2010 at 2:55 pm
    Orton: 3370 yards, 20 TD’s, 6 INT’s, sacked 29 times, QB Rating = 96

    Rivers: 3362 yards, 23 TD’s, 9 INT’s, sacked 25 times, QB Rating = 104

    Cassel: 2307 yards, 22 TD’s, 4 INT’s, sacked 15 times, QB Rating = 99

    Camp/Grads: 2381 yards, 12 TD’s, 13 INT’s, sacked 33 times, QB Rating = 71

    ***

    Hue Jackson needs a promotion ???

    —————————————————

    You really balme this on Jackson ? What QB can throw the ball with no time ? What qb can build consistency getting pulled from a game all the time ? It all rest at the HC the CABLE!

  • Hot Shot

    JLH sucks.He looks confused every time he gets the ball and he sucks at running routes.He should get cut next year.

  • http://www.wix.com/GGEden/ggeden GG

    Gradkoswki is delusional.
    If we make a run of wins, it means Campbell would be doing his job well, and thus no reason to switch to Gradkowski.
    So, Campbell gets all the wins, and Gradkowski when healthy steps in to take advantage and acclaim (if a playoff spot is secured).
    Don’t think so Jan.

  • RaiderRockstar

    5pm in Podunk – later gents!

  • Hot Shot

    They switch QBs so much cause both QBs are bellow average QBs.Coaches dont even play to our QBs strengths either.Let the players do what they do best and work from that instead of having them do lame crap they are not good at.

  • http://www.wix.com/GGEden/ggeden GG

    Cable is gone because Al did everything in his power to give him all he wanted. He drafted him the best LB prospect, acquired three others, drafted OL, signed a renowned NT, relieved him of play-calling, signed him some new QBs, etc etc, and Cable has not produced a playoff team to date.

    Cable has blundered thru a lot of it…OL players put in positions they’re not accustomed to or suit, not even found a way to get a highly talented one playing time, rotated QBs to the detriment of the passing game, upsetting the lockerroom in the process, etc.

    Cable’s mountain clearly is a playoff spot or being fired.

  • http://raiders.com A.B. Paine III

    I think Cable keeps his job if he can get to 8-8.

  • olinesux

    higgins is done next year, they will keep schilens ( for rod martins job security), ford, murphy bey and draft some other 4.2-4.3 guys…

  • inonewordraider

    Javone Bess would look nice in Silver and Black

  • PurpleDrank81

    Austin pettis plz

  • Guy

    I think Davone Bess would look better in Silver and Black. Haha just kidding unless you are talking about someone else. He would be a great slot receiver for us

  • inonewordraider

    Davone Bess my bad

  • PurpleDrank81

    Bess wouls look good in silver and black but Miami aint gettin rid of him…We need to draft a possesion reciever this year

  • McRaider5150

    McRaider5150 Says:
    December 1st, 2010 at 3:42 pm
    Hot Shot Says:
    The raiders never use their players right.They havent for 7 years now.We dont use the speed we have.They draft all these fast guys but dont give them a chance to show the speed they have.Wasted picks if your not going to use them.

    Agree 100%

    It’s not the coaches either. Al brings in coaches who he feels can run the Offense and Defense the way he wants.

    Most or all of the player drafted over the past 7 years have been drafted in the right placed base on what the experts say.

    McClain. Top 10 talent
    DHB- Late first rd talent
    DMC- Top 10 Talent
    JaRuss- Top 5 talent, but bust potential was also mentioned
    Michael Huff- TOP 10 Best (Safety in the entire draft)
    Fabian Washington- 1st or early 2nd rd Talent
    Robert Gallery- Top 5 talent (Best Lineman since Pace)
    Nnamdi Asomugha- Late first early second rd talent.

    All this the say, at some point, we have to stop blaming the coaches and the player and look at the system their in. Aside from Russell and Fabian, everyone of these player would benefit if they played in a system that allowed them to show their talent.

  • J Hill

    I’m pretty sure WR will be a priority this offseason.

    Can’t see too many scenarions that have Chaz as the projected #1 WR on the team. Nick Miller and JLH are done in Silver and Black. Have to be. Their 4 and 5 spots will be occupied by Murphy and Chaz. Ford in the slot, with 2 legit WRs next year.

  • djohnnyg

    Please stop talking about “playoffs” in regard to this yr.s Raider team. We’re 5-7 (after Sunday aft.) with Indy, Jacksonville, KC (on the road) and Denver (we could actually win that game).

    7-9 is best we can hope for, if that.

    I’m so darn disappointed in this team and them falling apart. I’m choking on the kool-aid I drank for sure.

    “Raider Reality” sucks.

  • J Hill

    Don’t need Bess.

    Ford already looks good in Silver and Black.

    1 smurf per team.

  • http://blackhole@aldavisshouldbeonmountrushmore Drexl

    I like the spunk, first twinkling of JC getting pissed off.
    JC needs to out duel Rivers this weekend as an “upyee” to the whole coaching staff.

  • http://www.pro-football-reference.com/ KoolKell

    Al Davis dropped a bundle on QB & WR in recent drafts, and we need to address them again this year?

  • inonewordraider

    7-9 is best we can hope for, if that.

    if you would have told me 7 and 9 beginning of the season I would sadly be ok with that

  • http://blackhole@aldavisshouldbeonmountrushmore Drexl

    We need to get Singletary in as LB coach the minute he is fired. Then he can “coach” em up. The same way he did R Lewis, and P Willis. That is what we need to help #55′s maturation process.

  • Macho Man Randy Savage

    hey Soulglo, never mind what people think of you, go out there and beat that blitz!

  • LA to TheBay

    If we beat the Chargers, we’re going to the playoffs. If we lose, we may finsih 6-10 or 5-11.

  • Guy

    JHill I think the Eagles have 2 smurfs in Jackson and Maclin. I’m not sure how tall Avant is

  • McRaider5150

    KoolKell Says:
    Al Davis dropped a bundle on QB & WR in recent drafts, and we need to address them again this year?

    until we get our liine fixed, Not sure what QB (Not named Vick) can come in a be successfull. We need a vet WR to come in a mentor our young WR, while putting up good number onthe field.

    Pick up a QB in the 3rd round.

  • http://blackhole@aldavisshouldbeonmountrushmore Drexl

    Grads is having a laugh, thinking he comes back after a second third degree.

  • J Hill

    29.KoolKell Says:
    December 1st, 2010 at 3:48 pm

    Al Davis dropped a bundle on QB & WR in recent drafts, and we need to address them again this year?

    —————————————————–

    YES!

  • LA to TheBay

    KoolKell Says:
    December 1st, 2010 at 3:48 pm
    Al Davis dropped a bundle on QB & WR in recent drafts, and we need to address them again this year?

    ——————–

    In fairness, we desperately needed a QB in 2007 and Al got the best one in the draft. Had all the physical ability in the world and the tools for the job, just not the mentality/maturity.

    Heyward-Bey was a reach on everyone’s draft board. I wish he would get him the ball more. Don’t think the QBs trust him, but he’s running his routes correctly, it seems.

  • LA to TheBay

    Sunday is a playoff game.

  • LA to TheBay

    Matter of fact, we have a month of playoff games ahead.

  • J Hill

    Can’t have smurfs as WR and expect to have a running game.

    Ford smurf is all we have room for.

  • Guy

    Also, Aso his not having an off year at all. He had one bad game vs Mia werhe he gave up 5 for 60+ yards, but in 7 or 8 games before that, he gave up 5 for 87 yards.

  • McRaider5150

    I think the guy who has really screwed up our passing game is Chaz S. he was our Crabtree. He would have 40 catched and 4 TD’s by now. Next year, cannot rely in him, we have to get us a possession WR.

  • http://www.aldavissucks.blogspot.com The Real MaddenRaider

    # mistic1 Says:
    December 1st, 2010 at 1:00 pm

    The Real MaddenRaider Says:
    December 1st, 2010 at 12:57 pm

    mistic1 Says:
    December 1st, 2010 at 12:55 pm

    It is common in football to refer to a team as the head coaches team.

    ……………..

    Yes it is.

    ===========================================================

    Thank you.

    Next!!!!!

    …………………

    I just want to know how this could be Cable’s team when Al Davis clearly said a few months ago that he’s heavily involved. Those were his exact words, as well, I believe. You keep calling this Cable’s team, insisting he’s failed. If Al’s heavily involved, didn’t he fail too? And this would be Al’s 8th straight season as a failure. Cable’s 3rd. So you tell me who the problem is.

  • Guy

    Atleast the lack of Chaz helped Ford emerge, I’m crossing my fingers and hoping Chaz will be healthy next year (like always). Who knows what Ford would have done if the starting line up was constantly Murphy, chaz, and DHB.

  • McRaider5150

    LA to TheBay Says:

    Heyward-Bey was a reach on everyone’s draft board. I wish he would get him the ball more. Don’t think the QBs trust him, but he’s running his routes correctly, it seems.

    If you put DHB on a team with a good coach and QB, he will make plays. They don’t even attempt to get DHB and I always watch his routes, I don’t see an issue there.

  • http://www.aldavissucks.blogspot.com The Real MaddenRaider

    # chuck Says:
    December 1st, 2010 at 2:13 pm

    Does anyone think gradkowski is being paid by someone too sabotage are season?

    ………….

    That’s a little out there.

    More likely, he’s just putting a preemptive argument in to refute the Raiders’ inevitable heightening of his injury status. The Raiders are making it sound like he’s ready for the garage. He’s saying he’s not. Now when Cable, or anyone with the Raiders, insists that Gradkowski is injured badly, reporters like Jerry will have grounds to accuse them of exaggerating. Gradkowski is smart. That’s what all of this means. Chalk him up to one of the many players and coaches who knows how to fight Al fire with fire.

  • LA to TheBay

    4 playoff games. DHB should be involved in every way possible, as should Ford, DMC, and Bush.

    DMC should have 30 touches alone v. SD.

    Reece to a lesser extent and Miller if/when healthy.

  • http://www.aldavissucks.blogspot.com The Real MaddenRaider

    # RaiderRockstar Says:
    December 1st, 2010 at 1:15 pm

    Gradkowski was doing little more than jogging through drills that didn’t include the throwing of a football.

    ***

    what good is a QB that cant throw the football?

    ………..

    Gradkowski is better when he’s unable to throw the football than Campbell is when he’s able to.

  • socalraider2408

    I bet Chaz suits up for sunday. It’ll be a homecoming game for him. If he can help us beat the Chargeless again then I wont mind him being put on IR the following week